Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Gimme some sugar

A 25-pound bag of sugar sits in our kitchen, between the microwave cart that holds the cookbooks and the doorway to the pantry. Why do we need 25 pounds of sugar you ask? Excellent question. I'll tell you: because we fancy ourselves food geeks.

More specifically, because we're making homemade ice cream for the wedding. With our current response rates to the invitations, we're figuring on seeing about 60 people there (which is much less than I'd thought and I'm curiously let down, even though that's just about what I originally wanted--it's Eric's large family that's making the difference), and planning to make about 10 gallons of ice cream, just to make sure there's enough. (And who could object to leftover homemade ice cream? We have a chest freezer now, we can store it.)

And 10 gallons of ice cream requires most of a 25-pound bag of sugar. Also gallons of milk and cream, pounds of fruit and chocolate, a big bottle of vanilla, a few cans of concentrated orange juice, and about three dozen eggs. And that's it. All-natural ingredients, that's us. We calculated it at about $100 for the whole thing, which puts us at about the same price as Breyer's (when it's not on sale, anyway) and a little better than Ben & Jerry's.

We can probably get away with making less than the full 10 gallons, considering we're also having cake and a catered lunch and snacks and candies and also cookies as favors and possibly a chocolate fountain. But we think we're food geeks, and we want to serve homemade ice cream to everyobe we know and love (who can attend). Besides, if the ceremony (still unwritten, I might add) is lousy or it turns out to thunderstorm, our ice cream is--in our admittedly biased opinions--good enough to make up for it. How can it not? Look how much sugar is going into it.

This weekend, we will go to The Andersons for fruit (and I will probably pick up a plant or two because I can't help it--especially if their cucumbers are ready for sale; I can keep them inside a couple of weeks if necessary). And then the great ice-cream-making saga of 2007 will begin.

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